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2023 Fantasy Forecast: Philadelphia Eagles

Philadelphia took a gigantic leap forward in their offensive production in 2022. Can the #Eagles repeat that in 2023? And, how do their offensive weapons stack up for fantasy? @Spydes78 takes a look at the reigning NFC champs.

The term ‘breakout’ gets thrown around liberally among fantasy players. However, there is no denying that the Philadelphia Eagles answered many questions in 2022. And, in doing so, they established themselves as a championship-level contender.

After backing into a one-sided playoff loss on the shoulders of a rush-dominated offense in 2021, many wondered whether the Eagles could successfully adopt a multi-dimensional offensive philosophy. After amassing just 3,404 passing yards (25th in the NFL) that season, it seemed a fair question. However, Philly answered the bell in a big way. By posting an impressive 4,105 through the air, they finished 2022 as a Top 10 unit.

Former offensive coordinator Shane Steichen was so successful in generating much-needed balance in the Eagles’ offense that it propelled him into a head coaching gig in Indianapolis. In steps, the newly promoted Brian Johnson. He will be tasked with maintaining a steep trajectory for Philadelphia’s explosive West Coast-centric offensive scheme.

Look for the Eagles to continue to be aggressive in their play-calling. It’s a luxury made possible by the adept roster construction of well-renowned architect Howie Roseman. With an ascending quarterback, exceptional skill position players, and perhaps the league’s best offensive line, a return to the Super Bowl seems well within the realm of possibility.


Jalen Hurts

It’s hard to believe that just a year ago, many (myself included) questioned whether Jalen Hurts could take that next step and become more than a run-first quarterback. It’s not that I necessarily doubted his ability to develop as a passer. I wanted to see it to be convinced. 

Well, Jalen showed me and the rest of the world exactly what he is capable of. Year over year, Hurts increased his passing yards by 557 yards (an 18% increase), his passing touchdowns by six (a 38% increase), and his completion percentage improved by more than five points. He had 28 more passing attempts, dropping his interception rate by 38%. By every objective metric, Hurts excelled as a passer.

But, surely, in establishing himself as a capable passer, he sacrificed some of the rushing threat that is the sweet, sweet nectar of fantasy enthusiasts, right? Not so fast. Hurts had 26 more rushing attempts in 2022. He found the end zone an impressive 13 times with his legs. An eye-popping statistic made possible by Philadelphia’s controversial but effective QB sneak scrum play.

After leading the organization to a Super Bowl berth on the wings of a statistical explosion, the Eagles rewarded Hurts in the offseason with a massive bank-breaking extension. Philadelphia is unquestionably Hurts’ team now. As he goes, so go the Eagles. 

Doubt him at your own peril. Jalen Hurts belongs in the top pantheon of dynasty QB1s, and the discount buy window is officially closed. You’ll need to pay up to acquire him, but given his outrageous growth rate, he’ll likely only get more expensive with time.

Next Man Up

When Gardner Minshew followed Shane Steichen to the Colts in free agency, the Eagles needed quarterback depth. They found another high-profile backup when they signed the well-traveled Marcus Mariota. The former number-two overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, Mariota’s career has devolved into a journeyman existence, weaving his way in and out of starting opportunities. Though he has shown flashes during his eight-year NFL career, there has not been enough consistency. Ball security, in particular, needs to be an area of focus for Mariota. Costly turnovers have become a trust-eroding hallmark of his game. Mariota should probably be rostered only as a fantasy asset as an insulating handcuff to Jalen Hurts.


Howie Roseman was in his bag again, reshaping the Eagles’ running back corps with his trademark salary cap savvy this offseason. Rather than re-sign high-priced free agent Miles Sanders, Roseman opted for Rashaad Penny on a team-friendly deal. He then paired Penny with local product D’Andre Swift through an in-draft trade with Detroit. These moves give the Philly run game a lot of potential with minor financial investment.

D’Andre Swift

A Georgia athlete lands in Philadelphia. Stop me if you’ve heard this story before. With a penchant for Athens’s finest defenders, the Dog-loving Eagles pivot a bit by fetching the offensive Swift from Detroit. 

Since being drafted in 2020’s second round, Swift has been a player whose performance has routinely lagged behind his hype. Never eclipsing 650 yards rushing in a season, one could argue that Swift has been a significant disappointment. However, injuries and usage have significantly eaten into his potential. Over his three-year NFL career, he has never started more than eight games in a season. Swift has been ultra-efficient for his career, owning impressive marks of 4.6 yards per carry and 7.7 yards per reception. 

Given the stable of backs that the Eagles have assembled, look for them to utilize a rotation that may limit Swift’s workload. However, before you write him off, beware that the recently departed Miles Sanders averaged only 13 carries per game over his four-year tenure in Philadelphia. And despite that lighter usage, Sanders finished as the RB15 in PPR for 2022. I see no reason why Swift could not realize similar success in the Eagles’ 2023 campaign, particularly if he excels as a pass catcher, a notorious area of struggle for Sanders.

Rashaad Penny

2023 is shaping up to be a career-defining year for Rashaad Penny. The former first-round pick’s time in Seattle was plagued by one injury after another. Penny appeared in just 42 of the available 81 games as a Seahawk (52%) while starting just 11 times. Ironically, much like the aforementioned Swift, Penny has shown flashes of greatness and some off-the-charts efficiency during his sporadic availability. Rushing for a bawdy 5.7 yards per attempt, talent has never been a concern with Penny.

If healthy, I anticipate Penny serving his time in the rotation on first and second downs. Behind a top line and in an explosive offense, that role is not insignificant. Reportedly having cut weight in the offseason to preserve his health, Penny knows this may be his last chance to shake the ‘injury prone’ label. Given his track record, you’re probably taking a chance by rostering Penny. That said, he feels like a risk worth taking.

Next Man Up

I expect that Swift and Penny will take the majority of the running back snaps for the Eagles’ offense. However, with medical histories that read like CVS receipts, those two are tough to count on for 17 games. Kenny Gainwell would be a name that becomes far more interesting should the injury bug raise its ugly head. Armed with the receiving talents to support Swift and the pass protection tenacity to backstop Penny, Gainwell is a stash with great utility in an oft-injured room.


A.J. Brown

Already a star upon his acquisition via trade last offseason, Brown took his game to a whole new level during his first year in Philadelphia. The former Titan set career highs for receptions (88), receiving yards (1,496), and touchdowns (11) upon being paired with longtime friend Jalen Hurts. The quarterback trusted Brown to win on contested catches, and that confidence proved quite lucrative, with Brown finishing as the WR6 in PPR. Entering just his age-26 season and in an offense that brings out the best in him, there’s no reason to question A.J. Brown. He is a bonafide stud wideout and should be drafted accordingly.

DeVonta Smith

Don’t let the presence of Brown overshadow the standalone talent of Smith. A star receiver in his own right, Smith set the Eagles’ all-time wideout record with 95 receptions in his first season paired with Brown. From a fantasy standpoint, the slender Alabama product was WR9 in PPR, giving the Eagles two receivers among last season’s Top 10. His production eclipsed players like D.K. Metcalf, Terry McLaurin, and Ja’Marr Chase. And, at the ripe age of 25, Smith is junior to the Brown above, for all of those ageists in the dynasty community. Smith has an ADP that ranks him just at the back end of the top receiving talents like Higgins, Wilson, and Olave. And, with perhaps the strongest quarterback among that quartet, Smith feels like a fantastic startup investment at that price.

Next Man Up

The Eagles receiving room is clearly defined by the above pairing of studs. Outside of Brown and Smith, there are some talents that you may want to consider for best ball, but none that you would feel comfortable starting on a week-to-week basis. Quez Watkins came up small in his opportunity as the third receiving option last season. However, he still has outstanding speed and can take the top off of a secondary at any point. And the newly acquired Olamide Zaccheaus should give the offense a skilled and reliable slot option that it desperately needs.


Dallas Goedert

Regarding the tight end in Philadelphia, there is no drop-off in talent. In fact, much like the backs in his locker room, injuries have proven to be the only thing that can derail Dallas Goedert. The distinguished tight end has missed an average of three games per season over the last four years and was absent for a career-high five games in 2022. These missed opportunities are significant, as Goedert was on pace for a potential 1,000-yard receiving season had his production not been hampered. In PPR scoring, Dallas ranked fifth in fantasy points per game with 11.8 and has firmly entrenched himself in the upper echelon of fantasy tight ends. He is the firewall between tight ends that you can be excited about and those that you can live with. I don’t recommend dipping any lower than Dallas Goedert if you expect to contend.

Next Man Up

If you’re working in a deep roster, tight-end-premium league, the Eagles have some compelling depth plays. Dan Arnold is a name that fantasy players will be familiar with as he has flashed relevance in recent years. Additionally, the Eagles used 2022 draft capital on Grant Calcaterra, who made limited contributions to the offense in his rookie debut. They have similar talents, move tight ends with pass-catching ability, and are likely battling it out for a roster spot behind established blocking stalwart Jack Stoll. Keep an eye on the positional battle and stash whichever player ends up being a Dallas Goedert injury away from being thrust into a starting role in a dynamic offense.


Last year’s Eagles were not viewed as a prohibitive favorite entering the season. However, after tremendous growth from their quarterback propelled them to an NFC championship, expectations are quite lofty entering 2023.

As with any team, health will play a massive role in determining their overall success. Hurts and Goedert missed time last season, and the newly revamped running back group is no stranger to the trainer’s table. The Eagles’ roster is tremendously talented from top to bottom, but even the most acclaimed group needs some good fortune to navigate the rigors of an NFL season unscathed. 

Another significant challenge for the Eagles will be the strength of a suddenly revitalized NFC East. Not too long ago, the laughing stock of the NFL, the ‘NFL Least,’ is now a monicker of the past. The Cowboys are stout with a brutal defense, and the Giants are an ascending club after ending a six-year playoff hiatus.

Heavy is the head that wears the crown, and as the reigning NFC champs, the Eagles must be prepared for every opponent to give them their best. NFL history is littered with teams that have failed to rebound after a Super Bowl defeat. Will the Eagles have it in them to buck that trend? Only time will tell, but this team will certainly not suffer from a lack of talent.

In Closing…

I thoroughly enjoyed bringing you this piece and would love to continue the conversation on the 2023 Philadelphia Eagles. Please feel free to comment below or contact me @Spydes78 on Twitter. And also, stay tuned to @DynastyNerds for a steady pipeline of content from our eminently qualified staff to carry you through your offseason. If you like what you read, please consider subscribing to any of the elite tools that Dynasty Nerds offers. Use the promo code “SPYDES” to receive a 15% discount. Thanks for reading, and enjoy the grind!

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